The Best Soft Side Luggage of 2024

Best Soft side luggage has become an essential companion for modern travelers, offering a blend of flexibility, durability, and style. As globetrotters seek lightweight and versatile options, the market has responded with a myriad of choices. In this review article, we delve into the realm of soft side luggage, exploring the key features that matter most to travelers. From material quality to organizational design, our guide aims to assist readers in making informed decisions about the best soft side luggage options available. Embark on a journey with us as we unveil the top picks and essential considerations for selecting the perfect travel companion.

10 Best Soft Side Luggage

Atrium Carry-On Spinner: Softside Luggage

The Atrium Carry-On Spinner is a softside luggage option from Samsonite, designed for travelers seeking a balance between affordability and functionality. Here’s a closer look at its features:

Material: Made from durable 100% polyester fabric.
Weight: The weight can vary slightly depending on the source, but it typically falls around 5.5 lbs (2.5 kg).
Features: Spinner wheels, multi-compartment interior, WetPak™ pocket, expandable, exterior pockets, and more.
Buying Source: Available on Samsonite’s official website and major retailers.

Customer Feedback:  Great value for frequent weekend trips! This carry-on is perfect for short getaways. It’s lightweight, maneuverable, and holds more than I expected. The spinner wheels are smooth, and the compartments help keep things organized. While the soft shell might not be the most durable, it’s a great option for the price.

Travelpro Platinum Elite Expandable Spinner Wheel Luggage

For the discerning traveler, the Travelpro Platinum Elite is a symbol of luxury and functionality. With a focus on durability and organization, this expandable spinner luggage is designed to elevate your travel experience. The high-density nylon fabric with DuraGuard coating ensures longevity, while the precision glide system guarantees smooth handling.

Material: High-density nylon fabric with DuraGuard coating.
Weight: Lightweight construction for hassle-free travel.
Feature: Expandable design, precision glide system.
Buying Source: Available on Travelpro’s official website and popular online marketplaces.

Customer Feedback: The Travelpro Platinum Elite earns high marks from customers for its luxurious feel and functional design. The high-density nylon fabric with DuraGuard coating receives positive feedback for its durability, and the precision glide system is commended for ensuring a seamless and quiet travel experience.

Tumi Alpha 3 Expandable International 4-Wheeled Carry-On

Step into the world of premium travel with the Tumi Alpha 3. Crafted from ballistic nylon, this expandable carry-on effortlessly combines sophistication with durability, making it the go-to choice for the modern globetrotter. The dual spinner wheels provide easy navigation, and the expandable main compartment offers versatile packing options.

Material: Ballistic nylon with impact-resistant exterior.
Weight: Lightweight design suitable for carry-on.
Feature: Expandable main compartment, dual spinner wheels.
Buying Source: Tumi’s official website and select luxury retailers.

Customer Feedback: Customers rave about the Tumi Alpha 3’s premium quality and thoughtful design. The ballistic nylon construction impresses with its durability, and the dual spinner wheels contribute to effortless navigation. Positive remarks also highlight the expandable main compartment, accommodating various packing needs.

Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On Expandable Spinner

Elevate your travel experience with the Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On. Meticulously designed for the frequent traveler, it boasts a CX compression-expansion system and a robust frame for durability and efficient packing. The outsider handle allows for flat packing, and the four spinner wheels ensure smooth mobility.

Material: Durable ballistic nylon fabric.
Weight: Lightweight construction with sturdy frame.
Feature: CX compression-expansion system, outsider handle for flat packing.
Buying Source: Available on Briggs & Riley’s official website and authorized dealers.

Customer Feedback: Frequent travelers appreciate the durability and efficiency of the Briggs & Riley Baseline Domestic Carry-On. The CX compression-expansion system proves invaluable, and the outsider handle for flat packing receives positive mentions. Customers consistently rate the four spinner wheels for their smooth mobility.

American Tourister Softside Luggage

American Tourister offers a wide variety of softside luggage options to suit different needs and budgets. Whether you’re looking for a lightweight carry-on for weekend trips or a spacious checked bag for longer journeys, American Tourister has something for you.

Here are some of the popular features of American Tourister softside luggage:

  • Lightweight: Softside luggage is typically lighter than hardside luggage, making it easier to maneuver and lift. This is especially important if you’re traveling for a long period or plan on doing a lot of walking.
  • Packable: Softside luggage often can expand or compress, which can be helpful if you’re trying to squeeze in extra souvenirs or need to fit your luggage into a tight space.
  • Affordable: Softside luggage is generally more affordable than hardside luggage, making it a good option for budget-conscious travelers.
  • Variety of styles and colors: American Tourister offers a wide variety of styles and colors to choose from, so you can find luggage that matches your taste.

Customer Feedback: Loved the lightweight maneuverability of my American Tourister softside! Packed efficiently for a weekend trip, and the expandable compartments were a lifesaver. While the material seems sturdy, I’d recommend extra care for sharp objects. Great value overall!

Delsey Paris Chatelet Soft Air 4-Wheel Spinner

Indulge in luxury with the Delsey Paris Chatelet Soft Air. This soft side luggage, adorned with faux leather accents, marries elegance with practicality, featuring a unique braking system and silent-running wheels for a seamless journey. The spacious interior and organizational features add to its appeal.

Material: Luxurious faux leather accents on durable polyester.
Weight: Lightweight and easy to handle.
Feature: Unique braking system, dual-density, silent-running wheels.
Buying Source: Delsey’s official website and well-known department stores.

Customer Feedback: Customers indulge in the luxury and practicality offered by the Delsey Paris Chatelet Soft Air. The faux leather accents and unique braking system receive high acclaim. Positive feedback also centers around the silent-running wheels, providing a smooth and quiet travel experience.

Travelpro Maxlite 5 Lightweight Expandable Suitcase

Designed for those who prioritize lightweight convenience, the Travelpro Maxlite 5 is a go-to choice. Boasting an expandable design and 360-degree spinner wheels, this suitcase offers maximum functionality without compromising on durability. The water-resistant coating adds an extra layer of protection.

Material: Durable polyester fabric with water-resistant coating.
Weight: Extremely lightweight for easy travel.
Feature: Expands for additional packing capacity, 360-degree spinner wheels.
Buying Source: Available on Travelpro’s official website and major retailers.

Customer Feedback: The Travelpro Maxlite 5 gains favor among customers for its lightweight design and versatile features. The expandable design proves handy, and the 360-degree spinner wheels receive consistent praise for making navigation effortless. The water-resistant coating adds an extra layer of protection, contributing to positive customer experiences.

AmazonBasics Softside Carry-On Spinner Luggage

For budget-savvy travelers, the AmazonBasics Softside Carry-On is a reliable choice. Offering multiple compartments and practical features, this luggage ensures you have everything you need without breaking the bank. The 600D polyester construction strikes a balance between affordability and durability.

Material: Durable 600D polyester.
Weight: Lightweight design suitable for carry-on.
Feature: Multiple compartments, telescoping handle, 360-degree spinner wheels.
Buying Source: Exclusively available on Amazon.

Customer Feedback: Budget-conscious travelers appreciate the AmazonBasics Softside Carry-On for its practicality and affordability. Multiple compartments and practical features receive positive mentions. The 600D polyester construction strikes a balance between cost-effectiveness and durability, earning positive feedback.

Ricardo Beverly Hills San Clemente Softside Spinner Luggage

Experience the perfect synergy of durability and style with the Ricardo Beverly Hills San Clemente. Crafted from abrasion-resistant fabric, this soft side spinner luggage is both resilient and chic, promising a seamless travel experience. The unique dual-density wheels and locking handle enhance both functionality and security.

Material: Abrasion-resistant, water-repellent fabric.
Weight: Lightweight construction for easy travel.
Feature: Expandable packing capacity, multi-stage locking handle.
Buying Source: Ricardo Beverly Hills’ official website and major retailers.

Customer Feedback: Customers laud the Ricardo Beverly Hills San Clemente for its perfect blend of durability and style. The abrasion-resistant fabric impresses with its resilience, and the unique dual-density wheels and locking handle contribute to both functionality and security, garnering positive customer feedback.

Kenneth Cole Reaction Out Of Bounds Lightweight Hardside Luggage

Discover the perfect balance between affordability and durability with the Kenneth Cole Reaction Out Of Bounds. This hardside luggage, featuring a lightweight design and self-repairing zippers, is your trusted companion for hassle-free travel. The molded corner reinforcement ensures the protection of your belongings.

Material: Durable ABS exterior with molded corner reinforcement.
Weight: Lightweight construction for easy handling.
Feature: Four-wheel spinners, fully lined interior, self-repairing zippers.
Buying Source: Available on Kenneth Cole’s official website and popular online platforms.

Customer Feedback: Customers find the Kenneth Cole Reaction Out Of Bounds to be an ideal choice for those seeking affordability without compromising durability. The lightweight design and self-repairing zippers receive positive feedback. Customers consistently appreciate the molded corner reinforcement for added protection, enhancing the overall positive customer experience.

Care and Maintenance Tips for Soft Side Luggage

Proper care and maintenance are crucial to ensure the longevity and continued functionality of your soft side luggage. To keep your luggage in top condition, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s cleaning instructions, typically found in the user manual or on the product label.

Regularly clean your soft side luggage with a mild detergent and a damp cloth, avoiding abrasive cleaners that may damage the fabric. When not in use, store your luggage in a cool, dry place, and avoid exposing it to direct sunlight for extended periods, as this can cause colors to fade and materials to weaken.

Promptly address any stains or spills to prevent them from setting, and periodically check for loose stitches, zippers, or handles, fixing any minor issues before they escalate. By adhering to these care and maintenance practices, you’ll not only preserve the aesthetic appeal of your soft side luggage but also extend its overall lifespan, ensuring it accompanies you on countless journeys with reliability and style.

When you should choose Soft side Luggage

Choosing between soft side and hard side luggage often depends on your travel preferences, needs, and the nature of your trips. Opting for soft side luggage is particularly beneficial in various scenarios:

Flexibility in Packing: Soft side luggage offers greater flexibility when it comes to packing irregularly shaped items or squeezing in last-minute additions. The expandable features allow for extra space when needed, accommodating varying amounts of belongings.

Lightweight Convenience: If you prioritize lightweight luggage, soft side options are generally lighter than their hard side counterparts. This becomes especially advantageous when you have weight restrictions or want to minimize the overall load you carry.

Maneuverability: Soft side luggage often comes with 360-degree spinner wheels, providing excellent maneuverability in crowded airports or tight spaces. This feature makes navigating through bustling terminals or weaving between people more convenient.

Versatility in Storage: Soft side luggage is more adaptable to different storage spaces, making it suitable for travelers who may need to fit their luggage into tight overhead compartments on planes, trains, or buses. The fabric construction allows for a bit of give, accommodating various storage situations.

Aesthetic Appeal: If you appreciate a variety of colors, patterns, and designs, soft side luggage offers a wide range of aesthetic options. Many travelers appreciate the ability to express their personal style through their luggage.

Casual and Business Travel: Soft side luggage often fits well in both casual and business travel settings. The designs are versatile enough to suit different occasions, making it a practical choice for those who have a mix of professional and leisure trips.

Affordability: In general, soft side luggage tends to be more budget-friendly compared to high-end hard side options. If you’re looking for reliable luggage without breaking the bank, soft side choices offer a cost-effective solution.

Soft Side Luggage vs. Hard Side Luggage

Choosing the right luggage for your travels involves considering various factors, and a key decision often revolves around whether to opt for soft side or hard side luggage. Let’s delve into a comprehensive comparison between the two:

Feature Soft Side Luggage Hard Side Luggage
Flexibility and Adaptability Pros: Allows for extra items and shape adjustment. Pros: Rigid shell provides superior protection.
Cons: May lack protection for fragile items. Cons: Fixed structure limits flexibility.
Weight Pros: Generally lighter. Pros: Durable but may be heavier.
Cons: May not offer the same impact resistance. Cons: Can contribute to overall weight concerns.
Maneuverability Pros: 360-degree spinner wheels for easy navigation. Pros: Rigid structure can withstand rough handling.
Cons: Fabric may be prone to wear and tear. Cons: Exterior can scratch or scuff over time.
Versatility in Storage Pros: Adaptable to different storage spaces. Cons: Fixed structure may limit adjustability.
Cons: Items inside may be more susceptible to damage.
Impact Resistance Pros: Flexible exterior can absorb impact. Pros: Rigid shell provides excellent protection.
Cons: May not provide the same level of protection. Cons: Exterior can scratch, affecting aesthetics.
Security Pros: Limited locking options. Pros: Integrated locking mechanisms for enhanced security.
Cons: Less secure compared to hard side. Cons: Fixed structure may limit over-packing options.
Durability Pros: Generally less prone to scratches. Pros: Resilient to wear and tear, ensuring a longer lifespan.
Cons: Exterior fabric can show wear over time. Cons: Heavier but more durable.
Water Resistance Pros: May be less water-resistant. Pros: Generally more water-resistant.
Cons: Exterior fabric may absorb water. Cons: Seals and zippers may pose vulnerabilities.

Soft Side Luggage:

Flexibility and Adaptability:

Pros: Soft side luggage is known for its flexibility, allowing you to squeeze in extra items or adjust the bag’s shape as needed. This adaptability is particularly useful when dealing with varying packing requirements.

Cons: The flexible nature may not provide the same level of protection for fragile items or electronic devices as hard side luggage does.


Pros: Generally lighter than hard side luggage, soft side options are preferred for those aiming to keep their overall luggage weight to a minimum.

Cons: While lightweight, soft side luggage may not offer the same impact resistance as hard side options.


Pros: Soft side luggage often comes with 360-degree spinner wheels, offering excellent maneuverability. This makes navigating through crowded airports or tight spaces more convenient.

Cons: The exterior fabric can be prone to wear and tear, affecting the bag’s long-term durability.

Versatility in Storage:

Pros: Soft side luggage is more adaptable to different storage spaces, making it suitable for travelers who need to fit their luggage into tight spaces.

Cons: The lack of a rigid structure may lead to items inside the bag being more susceptible to damage from external pressure.

Hard Side Luggage:

Impact Resistance:

Pros: Hard side luggage provides superior protection for fragile items due to its rigid shell. It is less prone to damage from rough handling during transit.

Cons: The hard exterior can scratch or scuff, affecting the aesthetic appeal over time.


Pros: Hard side luggage often comes with integrated locking mechanisms, enhancing security and providing peace of mind for travelers concerned about the safety of their belongings.

Cons: The fixed structure may limit the bag’s flexibility in terms of over-packing or adjusting to different storage spaces.


Pros: The durable materials used in hard side luggage make it resilient to wear and tear, ensuring a longer lifespan.

Cons: Despite its durability, hard side luggage can be heavier, contributing to overall weight concerns during travel.

Water Resistance:

Pros: Hard side luggage is generally more water-resistant than soft side options, protecting your belongings from the elements.

Cons: Seals and zippers may still pose vulnerabilities to water, and hard side luggage may not be as forgiving in terms of fitting into tight spaces.

In the soft side vs. hard side luggage debate, the choice largely depends on personal preferences, travel habits, and the specific needs of each trip. Soft side luggage is favored for its flexibility, lighter weight, and adaptability to tight spaces, while hard side luggage excels in providing enhanced protection, security features, and durability. Ultimately, the ideal choice depends on finding a balance between these factors that align with your travel requirements.

Final Thoughts on Best Soft Side Luggage

The choice between soft side and hard side luggage boils down to personal preferences and travel priorities. Soft side luggage excels in flexibility, lightweight convenience, and adaptability, making it suitable for various travel scenarios. On the other hand, hard side luggage offers superior protection, durability, and security features. Consider your individual needs, from maneuverability to the level of item protection required, to make an informed decision that aligns with your travel style. Whether you prioritize flexibility or robust protection, both types of luggage have their merits, ensuring a comfortable and secure journey.

Best Soft Side Luggage FAQs

What is the best material for soft shell luggage?

The best materials for soft shell luggage are typically durable fabrics like ballistic nylon or polyester blends. These materials offer a good balance of strength, flexibility, and resistance to wear and tear.

Is soft-side luggage waterproof?

Soft-side luggage is generally not fully waterproof. However, many soft-side options come with water-resistant coatings or treatments, providing some protection against light rain or splashes. For added waterproofing, consider using a rain cover or packing items in waterproof pouches.

Who makes the best soft-sided luggage?

Determining the best soft-sided luggage often depends on individual preferences and needs. Notable brands renowned for their quality soft-side luggage include Samsonite, Travelpro, Tumi, Delsey, and Ricardo Beverly Hills.

Is soft luggage better than hard?

The choice between soft and hard luggage depends on personal preferences and specific travel requirements. Soft luggage is preferred for its flexibility, lightweight design, and adaptability to tight spaces, while hard luggage offers superior protection against impact and is often more durable.

How do you clean soft shell luggage?

Cleaning soft shell luggage involves using a mild detergent or soap and a damp cloth. Gently scrub the surface, paying attention to any stains. Avoid using abrasive cleaners, and always check the manufacturer’s guidelines for specific cleaning instructions to maintain the luggage’s appearance.

How can I protect my soft luggage?

To protect soft luggage, consider using a luggage cover for an extra layer of defense against scratches and dirt. Pack items in waterproof pouches to guard against spills or rain. Additionally, avoid overpacking to prevent unnecessary strain on the zippers and seams.

Can I check soft luggage?

Yes, soft luggage is suitable for checking. However, it’s essential to choose durable luggage with reinforced seams and sturdy zippers to withstand the handling during the check-in process. Consider adding a luggage tag for easy identification and always check with the airline for specific regulations.

Can you take soft luggage on a plane?

Yes, soft luggage is commonly allowed as carry-on or checked baggage on airplanes. Soft-sided bags are often more versatile in fitting into overhead compartments and tight spaces. Be sure to adhere to the airline’s size and weight restrictions, especially for carry-on luggage.

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